The United States will return to the United Nations Human Rights Council in January, after former president Donald Trump in 2018 withdrew the United States from the controversial body.
“America stands ready to work with partners and allies to help lead the world towards a more peaceful and prosperous future, based on respect for human dignity,” US President Joe Biden said in a statement following the House vote.
“Together, we will stand up for the rights of all people, including women and girls, members of the LGBTQI+ community, members of ethnic and religious minorities, those living with disabilities, and members of other marginalized groups.”
Washington got 168 votes, far more than the 97 needed. Even so, only Eritrea, who was able to come close with 144 votes from the 18 countries elected to the council.
America’s envoy Linda Thomas-Greenfield said the US’s return to the council fulfilled Biden’s campaign promise to rejoin the agency to ensure it fulfills its mandate.
One of the main criticisms leveled at the Human Rights Council is that some of the rights violators are members of the body itself. Foreign Minister Antony Blinken acknowledged the truth of the criticism. (ka/rs)